Yesterday I wrote about the excellent and popular activities available for eco-kids at the first-ever eco show in Seville, held last week.
Today I’ll tell you about some of the more grown-up excitements which I came across, foodie and otherwise.
I love Manchego cheese, but I’ve never found any as good as the stuff my Dad buys in his local market in England – I guess they export all the best. But I tried some excellent organic Manchego yesterday at Eco Sevilla – it was a curado, firm, sweet and tangy, not too strong (pure sheep). There was another, called albala, flavoured with honey and rosemary, its crust coated in the herb. A big throng was milling around the seller’s little stall – like many small producers, Manchego Bio is a family business and there was only one lady to give out tasters, answer queries and sell the cheese. But I waited, with an impatient child, and bought some to take home.
Being a sucker for bread and cheese, and organic gourmet options thereof when available, I thought it would be rude not to buy a loaf from a producer I’ve been meaning to try for ages, so I got a loaf of cheese and oregano bread from La Andalusi. The bread was disappointing – it tends to be dry, with an unpleasant texture here – I like my bread moist, if you know what I mean.
Now, men may want to skip this paragraph. Ladies: have you ever heard of a product called Naturcup? It’s used instead of, er, sanitary equipment at that time of the month, of you catch my drift. It’s plastic and is therefore washable and reusable – even more saintly than those hassly, smelly washable eco-warrior nappies. It makes sense environmentally, economically, hygienically, and yet the thought of it – for a squeamish labour-was-bloody-agony-not going-there mum like me – is just too unpleasant to contemplate. I’ll recycle my plastic, make shopping lists on the back of unwanted print-outs and put a brick in my loo cistern quite happily, but when it comes to this, I’m old-fashioned. Sorry.
Which takes me nicely to the next teenage-snigger-inducing moment of Eco Sevilla. There I was, innocently browsing a stall hanging with herbs that looked like a medieval apothekary’s, when I spotted a special blend for an ailment that made me chortle.
Leaving my juvenile sense of humour behind, I reverted to more conventional organic produce – mangoes (some of the most monster specimens I’ve ever seen), bananas and avocadoes from Nerja.
These people had also brought sugar cane to press for juice – it was great to see an old machine like this being put to use. Not that keen on the juice, though, having tried it abroad before.
As you’d expect at an organic fair, there were a couple of food stalls, serving tofu burgers, veggie curries and the like.
I had a glass of mango juice – more like puree, really, but gobsmackingly delicious nonetheless. One of them even had organic beer.
But this drink was the one that really tickled me.
All good, clean, green fun. I hope the fair does come back next spring, as the organiser told me it might. In a recession, people aren’t keen to shell out extra cash for items they can buy more cheaply, but for the odd treat – organic Manchego, in my case – it’s worth it.